The Coast News Group
Carlsbad Police
Carlsbad Police Department. Courtesy photo

Carlsbad police end 16-hour standoff with armed man in distress

CARLSBAD — A 16-hour law enforcement standoff involving a distraught man armed with a gun in a parked car at a Carlsbad office complex came to an end today when he peaceably surrendered.

The events that led to the lengthy impasse began at about 7:15 p.m. Thursday, when dispatchers got calls reporting that a “person in distress” who might have a weapon was in a parking lot on Loker Avenue West, east of El Camino Real and north of Palomar Airport Road, according to the Carlsbad Police Department.

After officers were unable to persuade the possibly suicidal 54-year-old man to surrender, police called in SWAT personnel and closed a stretch of the street, CPD spokeswoman Denise Ramirez said.

The stalemate continued overnight and through most of the morning, with crisis negotiators trying to persuade the man to disarm himself, surrender and get help. As a precaution, police arranged for businesses in the area to delay opening Friday morning.

Shortly before 11:30 a.m., the man finally emerged from the car unarmed and gave himself up without incident. He was taken to a hospital for assessment and care.

“We would like to thank our community for their patience and for avoiding the area so we could bring this difficult situation to a peaceful conclusion,” Carlsbad Police Chief Mickey Williams said. “This incident really shows the value of de-escalation training, especially related to people who may be having a mental health crisis.”

For more local crime news, please read The Coast News’ Weekly Crime Reports and Daily Arrest Logs for up-to-the-minute arrest reports in North County. Visit the San Diego County Sheriff’s website for more information about arrests, cold cases and active alerts. 

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